ABOUT

JANET PILLAY
Founder, Dying the Dream

Career changes have taken me from the beauty industry to law where I have met captivating people and heard fascinating stories.  Nothing has left me more awestruck or been as transformational however, than the years I have worked with the dying. Being exposed to the rawness of humanity, with all its good and bad, has brought a profound understanding of unity and interconnectedness.  To be invited into a dying person’s sanctum of vulnerability and all things sacred is a tremendous honour, each and every time.

Within hospitals and residential hospice I have sat at innumerable bedsides of the dying and witnessed the overwhelming fear and anxiety that envelops so many, including their family and friends.  I’ve seen relationships destroyed, desires and wishes ignored and all too many questions gone unanswered.  It became clear how this suffering could be alleviated and Dying the Dream was created.

Having been a primary caregiver and subsequently widowed, I have first hand experience as to the complexities and extreme challenges of navigating health care, palliative care, hospice, end of life care, death and post death care.  From these experiences and the deaths of those I have held close, compassion runs deep.

A previous intercultural marriage, extensive travel and having lived abroad all contributed to a genuine appreciation and respect for differences between cultures and a sensitivity to others’ religions, beliefs and traditions.  I have sat vigil at many deathbeds within varied settings and in so doing, have considerably strengthened my abilities in holding space and remaining present in any surrounding with anyone.

My repertoire of skills and techniques is enriched by continued learning, especially bedside to the dying. I am a certified End of Life Doula with Death, Dying & Bereavement certification, extensive education in Hospice Palliative Care and Physical & Emotional Suffering at End of Life as well as other courses and training pertaining to end of life. Current volunteer work includes sitting vigil for the actively dying with Alberta Health Services.

I am a keen admirer of mandalas and as such, have incorporated them into Dying the Dream’s aesthetics. Mandalas have been created for centuries in Asia and India and now are seen throughout North America and Europe as well. From Sanskrit, the word mandala directly translates to circle. A circle symbolizes totality, the infinite and completion. Similarly, mandalas are symbolic of the universe and spiritual journey, where suffering can be transformed into joy, which is the very essence of Dying the Dream.

Active Memberships

End of Life Doula Association of Canada

National End of Life Doula Alliance

Death Doula Network International